Daydreams

Rene Cloke
Rene Cloke (1905-1995) was an author and illustrator of stories for very young children. She also illustrated several books for Enid Blyton, which included the Three Golliwogs, Brer Rabbit, Mr. Meddle, Mr. Pink Whistle and the Amelia Jane books. All of which still remain upon my library shelves.

However, she was possibly best known as a painter of fairy subjects, which were reproduced by a number of publishers, including Medici (greeting cards) and Valentine (postcards).

I have long been an admirer of her fairy paintings along with those of Margaret Tarrant (1888-1959), Hilda T. Miller (1876-1939), Ida Rentoul Outhwaite (1888-1960), Cicely Mary Barker (1895-1973) as well as other illustrators of their time with similar styles and interests.

Margaret Tarrant
Strangely, these women were all British apart from Ida, who was Australian. Ida was born in Carlton, Victoria, the youngest child of four and second daughter of the Rev. Dr. John Laurence Rentoul, an Irish-born Presbyterian minister and his wife Annie Isobel, née Rattray.

Ida's first illustration was published by New Idea magazine in 1904 when she was just 15 years of age, accompanied with a story written by her older sister, Anne Rattray Rentoul. In the years that followed, the sisters collaborated on a number of stories and after her marriage to Grenbry Outhwaite in 1909, she also collaborated with him on The Enchanted Forest (1921), The Little Fairy Sister (1923) and Fairyland (1926).

Ida Rentoul Outhwaite
I grew up reading hand me down books like The Water-Babies by Charles Kingsley, Dulcibella & The Fairies by Alice Raiker and borrowed Cicely Mary Barker picture books, so I guess it's little wonder I became such a dreamer at school.

Still, I'm sure it was those very same books, which helped develop my very vivid imagination, without which, I would never have enjoyed such a successful and varied career.

This fondness I have of fairies, elves and other fictional creatures, is perhaps also the reason for my loving my tiny Fairyland dolls so dearly. In my opinion, my precious Real Puki's and Puki Fees along with the newly introduced Real Fees truly capture the qualities of the fairy and elf beautifully.

Cicely Mary Barker
Hilda T. Miller
Tales of fairies, pixies and other creatures of the forest bewitched me as a child and I'm afraid, even after all these years, the realm of fantasy still has a strong hold on my daydreams and my heart. It's the happy part of my life which holds no sorrow, nor regret.

Happy daydreams to you all!
X

There are elves at the bottom of my garden!
 

Comments

  1. Oh I was a big fan of Enid Blyton books when I was younger. I loved the stories and illustrations. I vaguely recognise some of those fairy illustrations. (And I didn't know New Idea had been around that long!)

    It's really neat to hear about your childhood and how you came to embrace and fall in love with all these mystical creatures. I remember when I was younger, I was fascinated with fairies. Back then, we lived in Sydney but in the outer suburbs (North Richmond I think). Every time after it rained, I would sneak out to the backyard and check for mushroom rings. I loved playing with those paper fairy dolls.

    Do you like Brian Froud's work? He is my favourite artist and I adore his illustrations of faeries. I've got most of his faery books and also the Lady Cottington books which he also illustrated for. I was so fascinated with those stories and really liked that movie that came out years ago, Fairytale: A True Story. I think I actually have that somewhere on DVD.

    The Resinsoul MSD dolls kind of remind me a little of his work. It's why I often regret selling my RS Mei, although she's easy enough to buy back really.

    Your three little elves look so happy.

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    1. Hi Alasse,
      I'm pleased you enjoyed it. It's quite amazing how faries play a part at some time in all our lives.

      Oh yes, I love his work, The World of the Dark Crystal which he illustrated to go with the film and The Goblins of Labyrinth which he wrote with Terry Jones are two of my favourites. Some people consider his work to be a little dark, but I just love the expression he manages to portray on his faces.

      Yes, they are happy little souls. :)
      Hugs,
      X

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  2. Hi Sandi!

    I love this entry. I have always been fascinated by all kind of fantasy creatures. When I was a child I loved to watch an animated TV series called The World of David the Gnome.

    I have an Enid Blyton book, although in Spain this one and I'm sure that many others by this writer, was illustrated by María Pascual, a Spanish illustrator who made lovely illustrations for children's books. I have some other books by other authors illustrated by her, but many artworks were in black and white and I painted them with markers.

    We have to keep that piece of magic in our lives.

    Greetings ^^

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    1. Hi Lily!

      Ah so we have another thing in common then. :)

      Did you know she wrote around 400 books? I think many of her books were translated and illustrated by different artists. I will see if I can find any of Maria Pascual's illustrations on line.

      I agree with you, we should, there's not enough magic these days.
      Hugs,
      X

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  3. The illustrations are gorgeous, I love that style of painting/drawing. Your little elves look so happy, it's nice to see them together :-)!

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    1. Hi Linds!
      I would imagine they hold great appeal for most girls. There are some people who collect the fairy postcards.
      I am just about to commission each of them a new set of crochet clothing, so they should be happy. LOL!
      Hugs,
      X

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  4. This kinds of fantasy is my absolute favorite and I also is what makes me love your tinies so much!

    The illustrations are simply stunning and very magical, like your photos :D
    They remind me of a book about celtic faerie folklore called "The Celtic Twilight", which is a very interesting read I might add :)

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    1. Hi Alejandra!
      When I began this post I wasn't sure if anyone would be really that interested, but I can see now that the subject has quite an appeal.
      Thank you for liking the photos of my tinies. I'll have to chase that book up and have a read. :)
      Hugs,
      X





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  5. It's funny that I don't consider myself a fan of fantasy in the typical "Middle Earth/Sword and Sorcery" sense but I've always liked Elves and Dragons. Heck if I know why!

    I love the illustrations you posted but I was immediately drawn to (no pun intended) the work of Cicely Mary Barker. I need to look her up and check out more of her work.

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    1. Hi GT!
      It's nice to know you have an interest in the elves and dragons. although I have many elves, I only have one dragon, but my daughter has many. :)

      You won't have much trouble finding her work, it has been reprinted so many times and there are even wall posters of her work. If I'm not mistaken the is even gift wrap with her fairies on. :)
      Hugs,
      X

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  6. YESSSS!!!!!! Great post.I grew up looking at these kinds of pictures and books as well! As you know, Enid Blyton is one of my favourite authors, although I did not realize that she had written so many books.
    I agree, Fairyland dolls really do epitomize the true essence of fairies and elves!
    Hugs,
    Sam

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    1. Hi Sam!
      Glad you enjoyed the post. :) Yes, Enid Blyton was a most prolific writer and although I have read many of her books, I doubt if I managed to read half of them.
      I think as much as I love all my dolls, Fairyland are by far my favourites.
      Hugs,
      X

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  7. Another fairy, elf and dragon lover raises her hand. I love my RS Mei and my Dream High Studio Micros. I also have a Leopardess Moon Design bjd dragon that is incredible.

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    1. Hi Richi,
      I don't know Leopardess Moon Design, I'll have to check them out. The only dragon I have now is Singe from The Mushroom Peddler, but I did buy an Aileen Doll Ashes for my daughter.
      Hugs,
      X

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  8. What a lovely post - you are a girl after my own heart !
    Enid Blyton has a lot to answer for ^_^
    I can't even imagine what my life would be like without the little folk and all those artists who continue to fire my imagination to this day.
    Recently new to me are
    http://www.federationfairies.com.au - if u like Ida these are worth a look.
    Fairy wishes and pixie dust xx

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    1. Thank you Carolyn, for your comments and the link. It's a beautiful website and I have added her blog to my reading list. I shall order a calendar for next year, it would be lovely to see all her art restored to it's former glory. :)
      Hugs,
      X

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